LEFT: Chief Justice David Maraga. RIGHT: Media personality Julie Gichuru.LEFT: Chief Justice David Maraga. RIGHT: Media personality Julie Gichuru.
By HILARY KIMUYU

Media personality Julie Gichuru and Chief Justice David Maraga have been named among the 100 Most Influential Africans in 2017.

The 2017 list, compiled by The New African magazine, features 42 women, the highest number of female entries so far. The magazine began publishing the acclaimed end-of-year list five years ago.

Other Kenyans included in this year’s list include nutritionist and Africa Food Prize Winner Prof Ruth Oniang’o in the Public Service Category, Hellen Obiri, the 5000m World Champion and double champion Faith Kipyegon in the sports category and James Mworia – MD and CEO of Centum Investments in the Business and Finance Category.

MOST DIVERSE

The list – the magazine’s most diverse to date – is spread over eight categories: politics and public service; business and finance; civil society and activism; education; science, technology and innovation; media; arts and culture; and sport – profiles both continental and Diasporan Africans nominated by their peers and industry insiders.

PHOTO | COURTESY

PHOTO | COURTESY

Omar Ben Yedder, Group Publisher and Managing Director of IC Publications, said what readers will find pleasing is the  diversity of the list in terms of race, ethnic and national diversity.

“This list, if nothing else, displays the beauty and power of the diversity that makes the Africa we all love,” said Mr Yedder.

GLASS-CEILINGS

The magazine’s editor Anver Versi added; “Our criteria for “influential” this year was a fairly simple one – it is applied to people whose work or activity has had some sort of transformative effect outside their main calling. This effect results in a change of perception or provides inspiration to others. Many in our selection have shattered the proverbial glass-ceilings or disability stigma and do so with great bravery, determination and personal sacrifice. Others yield economic power that impacts world markets.

According to Versi, African talent in the arts, culture, sports and technology has also had a huge impact on changing the world’s perception towards Africa and its people.

With 21 entries, Nigeria tops the nominations, closely followed by South Africa whichhad 14 names.

In total the list has entries from 31 countries including 12 Francophone Africa.